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MMRC Exoskeleton Pilot Program

Since 2017, The Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology at The University of Hong Kong has launched a pilot program to examine the optimal treatment strategies for spinal cord injury rehabilitation.


One major component of this pilot program involves the trial use of powered robotic exoskeletons as a means of rehabilitation for spinal injured patients. Between 2018-2020, approximately 1000 sessions of exoskeleton training were performed for clinical service, research, and community projects. With the promising results, in 2022 the Hospital Authority officially adopted exoskeleton training in MMRC as a funded service in Hong Kong public hospitals, delivering a total of 3000 sessions of training to SCI patients per year within 3 designated hospitals.

The program was generously supported by the Chow Tai Fook Charity Foundation.

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Head of Prosthetics and Orthotics at MMRC Mr. Terrence Kwong joins allied health professionals at MMRC for a demo session on exoskeleton paraplegic walking (Ekso GT device). 

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The MMRC Pilot Scheme on Power Robotic Exoskeletons for spinal cord injury was demonstrated in the 2018 HKCEC Book Fair 


A major facet of the pilot program for advancing spinal cord injury treatment and rehabilitation involves enhancing public awareness. Be it book fairs, TED talks, or public lectures, over the past two years the HKU team has been a staunch advocate for SCI patients.

Professor Kenneth Cheung and Champion Rock Climber Lai Chi Wai present the poignant life story of spinal cord injury recovery in the 2018 TEDxHKU (link in photo)


Maclehose Medical Rehabilitation Centre is our dedicated SCI rehabilitation hospital

Click on the video to hear directly from patients who have benefitted from our pilot programs


From left to right:

Dr. Paul Koljonen, Prof Kenneth Cheung, Prof Bernadette Tsui, Prof Norman Tien, Mr. Donald Choi, Mr. Lai Chi Wai, Ms. Stella Chiu

In January, at the "Urban Climb 300M+" event, champion paraplegic climber Lai Chi-Wai climbed up Nina Tower in a wheelchair up to 250 metres, achieving the world's first success as a wheelchair user climbing a skyscraper.

The event was organized by Ignite Community Services and sponsored by Chinachem Group, generating a total donation of HKD 7.7 million to The HKU Department of Orthopaedics & Traumatology's “Get Up and Walk” Campaign


Raised funds will be used to support clinical services and research for individuals with spinal cord injury. 

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